Spent a few days in St. Louis recently with the grandkids. We arrived a day early for a date night. Had a great meal at Nixta. I am not generally a fan of Mexican food, though MC is.
Wow, we both really enjoyed it.
Started with the tlayuda. I honestly was not expecting much. We both loved it. Wonderful flavor (carrot coriander salsa, burrata, seeds and herbs on a flour tortilla). It was rather filling for a small plate (sigh, one of the sad things about aging is that one gets full too fast). Next was a flauta (local mushrooms, spinach, cheese, and a mushroom crema. I thought it was good, MC said excellent. Following was a order of lamb taco (two, very well filled, with a subtle flavor. We both rated this one as a close second, following the tlayuda. We wrapped up splitting a flan. Extremely light, which was just what we needed.
I enjoyed the mezcal based margarita, while MC strongly preferred the traditional (she made a when sour face when tasting mine).
We generally prefer seafood, but wanted things outside our experience. Next time, we will probably try the crab tostada (but have the tlayuda again).
We had a date lunch at Vicia's the next day (our kids were not out of school until 3ish). Another great meal. Our favorite was the tartine (summer squash, tomato sofrito, whipped ricotta, basil on porridge bread). Close second was a chilled sweet corn soup with a charred vegetable mole. We enjoyed the frittata (red pepper, potato & leeks). The Grains dish was good, but we had been spoiled by the earlier plates.
A definite return, but for dinner next time.
We picked up the boys after school, and settled them into our hotel. They got to pick the restaurants for the weekend. Their first pick was 5 Star Burgers. Excellent burgers (perfect at medium rare) and the craft beers. Onion rings and fries were also good.
The youngest picked his favorite bar-b-cue place (Bandana's) for Saturday. Both boys ordered chicken sandwiches--go figure. MC & I split a rack of ribs (hey, their website said award winning). These were probably the worst ribs we have ever had. The pieces on both ends were pretty much just burned crisp. We still gave a good tip, as it wasn't the servers fault. I thought about sending the ribs back, but we were on a tight schedule, taking the boys to a "clean" improv night at Gaslight Theater.
We had planned on taking everyone to Pastaria on Sunday. However our daughter had gone to the Clayton art fair on Friday and said it would be impossible to find parking. MC and I decided to try as we were headed out of town. After finding parking (it was difficult). We walked around the fair for awhile, then to Pastaria. There was no way we were going to leave St. Louis without made in-house pasta. We had the Wood Oven Roasted Lasagna and the Pistachio Ravioli. MC is the lasagna fan, me not so much. However, we both loved this one. Ravioli was also excellent. We each had a local craft beer.
We love going out in St. Louis, but the four hour drive is difficult for me, with 5 back surgeries in the last five years. Still, grand-kids plus date nights are a great combination.